‘Featherlight,’ by Peter Bunzl, cover by Evan Hollingdale.

I’m thrilled that Peter Bunzl has added his talents to the brilliant selection of short, snappy reads published by dyslexia-friendly publisher, Barrington Stoke. As you would expect if you’ve read Peter’s ‘Cogheart’ series, ‘Featherlight’ has family at its heart with a little flash of magic.

When the lighthouse no longer shines, what else has the power to guide you to shore?

Deryn’s father is the lighthouse keeper on Featherstone Island, keeping the lantern lit to protect passing boats from the treacherous rocky coastline. But when an emergency arises and her parents have to travel to the mainland for help, Deryn is left alone to keep watch over the lighthouse, and she finds herself in a terrible situation when the lamp runs out of oil during a wild storm.

With a fishing boat in peril on the sea, and time running out to rescue those on board, Deryn seeks help from an unusual source. Will she be able to keep the lantern lit through the dark, dangerous night?’


The nature of this series means that all titles need to be tightly plotted in order to include all the action the author wants. Featherlight certainly does this! We’re whisked from being tucked up cozily in bed, to being in charge of the lighthouse, to a storm brewing up, to a magical creature appearing, then back to calm again. All within eighty pages. Phew!

Throughout, Bunzl explores a range of emotions with our main character Deryn, as she waits for news from the mainland about the safe delivery of her new sibling. He also manages to conjure up a good helping of magical sparkle in the arrival of the legendary firebird – saviour and guide of many a fisherman.

Drawing on inspiration from real life heroes such as Grace Darling and Ida Lewis, this is a thrilling, accessible read for anyone with a reading age of 8+

Library Girl.

*Many thanks to Barrington Stoke for sending me this title to review*

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